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MTD 990 Twactor Guy
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574 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I have an older (2003) Generac P5000 generator with a Tecumseh HM100 engine. It was purchased the day we had a horrendous wind storm that caused the electricity to be out for 3-days. Lucky for me, I bought the last one on the floor at Farm & Fleet.

Here's the deal - being the last model available, I didn't have any choice for options - like electric start. I haven't used this unit much in the past few years, but I'd like to use it for a remote power supply when I'm working around the yard. Needless to say, that 10 hp Tecumseh is a beast to pull start!:banghead3 I'm thinking of adding a 12 vDC system to it, but want to make sure I'm doing it right, or am I better off going to the 110 vAC system? I checked out the motor and it does have the ring gear on the flywheel, and the shroud is set-up for adding a starter motor. The 12 vDC model I'd need is a #36680, which I can pick-up off eBay for under $60 new, with shipping.

If I go the 12 vDC route, can I just wire in a push button between the starter and the battery?

Thanks for your help and opinions on this,
Rich
 

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close enuff works for me
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3,126 Posts
Go with the 12 volt starter, so you can jump start it with a car or pickup truck........If you have a 110 volt starter, how are you going to crank it if the power is out ???.......:crybaby::banghead3
 

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Old Stonebreaker
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3,398 Posts
If you go w/ the 12v, you'll also need a solenoid to carry juice from the battery to the starter. Just a pushbutton won't handle the amps.
Mike
 

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MTD 990 Twactor Guy
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574 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
If you go w/ the 12v, you'll also need a solenoid to carry juice from the battery to the starter. Just a pushbutton won't handle the amps.
Mike


Ok - I thought there might be a little more to it. When it comes to electrical systems, I don't have much experience or knowledge. So, I need to run a positive wire from the battery to the solenoid, then a wire from the solenoid to the push button switch, and then to the battery. The ground (negative) wire goes directly from the battery to the starter? What kind of solenoid? I see 3 and 4 pole solenoids listed on eBay.

Try switching to synthetic oil before you burn $ on starters. That engine should be a very easy starter. rscurtis

Boy, I don't know how much difference that would make. When you pull on the recoil starter, the whole generator moves sideways. After 3 pulls, you feel like you're ready for a coranary! If my wife had to start it when I was gone, she'd never be able to. That's another reason why I'm looking to go with the 12 vDC system.

Thanks for the help on this,
Rich
 

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Old Stonebreaker
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3,398 Posts
Lowes sells the kind of solenoid you need. It has two large posts for the heavy cables to attach to and a small one, usually a blade connector style. Run a 6 or 8 gauge batt cable from the + batt post to one of the large lugs on the solenoid, doesn't matter which one. Then run another large cable from the other solenoid lug to the starter. Now run a small wire,12 or 14 gauge from the + batt post to one side of the pushbutton switch, then run another small wire from the other side of the pushbutton to the small lug on the solenoid. It would be best to mount the solenoid on the frame or batt tray/box and run a small ground wire from one of the solenoid mounting screws back to the batt - post. You'll also need to run a large cable from the - batt post to the engine block to complete the circuit.
Once you get it all working, invest in a batt charge maintainer. HF sells them now for $3.99. It should assure the batt is charged in case you're not home when the power goes out.
HTH,
Mike
 

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Lindeman crawler fan
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2,710 Posts
If you don't want to have to wire in a starter solenoid and a starter button to operate it, you can just use the heavy duty starter button.
It takes a cable from the battery to it and then a cable from it to the starter.

Cars back in the 20's and 30's used them as a foot operated starter switch and a some tractors still use them.
They can be operated by foot or by hand.
You can get them from any auto parts and from TSC.
 

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134 Posts
I'm still scratchin my head over the whole "When you pull on the recoil starter, the whole generator moves sideways" thing. I have a Generac 5500 with a 10hp I can pull that left handed, all day.
 

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MTD 990 Twactor Guy
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574 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
Don't know why it's so had to start, but it's been a bear since the day I bought it. It's never turned over easy, that's the biggest reason for going to electric start.

Have everything gathered together. Picked up a new starter on eBay for $55. Bought a flywheel on eBay for $49.99, shipping included. However, before it shipped, the seller told me he couldn't find that model and asked if it was OK to send a different model number (it was interchangeable), and this one had the alternator with it. In a blink, I told him Yes - go ahead and send it! Not bad - a slightly used flywheel with ring gear and the alternator, all for $50 including shipping.

This weekend I'll change flywheels and get some pics posted of the whole change over.

Thanks for everyone's help on this,
Rich
 

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MTD 990 Twactor Guy
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574 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
Well, it's been awhile since I was able to get back on this, but it's finally finished! :050:

The flywheel I purchased did not have generating capacity to recharge the battery - it was to power a utility light. Oh, well - still got it for a good price. I'm hooking it up to an automatic battery tender anyway. It'll keep the battery charged and a little warmer for when I need it.

Here's why this has taken so long (trial and error - lots of errors! Or, was it just learning lots of ways how NOT to do it!) Bought a solenoid to hook-up in line, along with a 30 amp momentary switch. Bought both at the local Farm & Fleet store, with some guidance from the "knowledgable" sales person.

Ok, now I'm ready to put this whole thing together and start making some portable electricity. I spent a little extra time fabricating a plate to mount the switch and a mount / cover for the solenoid. Ran and secured all of the wires. Yes siree - she's ready to go! Gas on; switch on; choke on - hit the start button - nothing! Anyway, after messing around another 2 hours, it turned out to be a bad solenoid.

After researching this a bit more, I found the starter button I was looking for in the beginning at my local Oreilly's auto parts store. Tore everything apart and started over. New mounting plate for the starter button, and removed the solenoid and wiring. Mounted my switch, rerouted and attached my wires, and hit the switch for the trial run. Starter engaged as it should - yippie! Pushed it out of the garage / shop to start it for real. Gas on; Switch on; Choke on - hit the start button - Rrrrr - Pucka, pucka - Vroom! Whew!

Anyway, here's some pics of the final product. Glad this is finished. Now I can get back to tractors and stuff.

:thThumbsU Rich
 

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Good on you for following thru with this project. Makes it nice to just push a button for "go".

Mike
 
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